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FREE

#3

Halloween 2011


ON ILLUSTRATI

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ROBERTSON : KATHRYN

LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


ILLUSTRATION: REBECCA YOUNG

CONTENTS News

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Chased By Wolves live; Hyde & Beast tour; BEAK

Live Reviews

6 - 10

Symphonic Pictures; Sonner EP launch; My experience at SPLIT; Split Parade (Mammal Club, Let’s Buy Happiness)

Demo / Track Reviews

12 - 13

Ajimal; Amy Holford

Morris Ford

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Symphonic Pictures

16 - 17

All That Sheila Loved

18 - 19

A short story

Spiderland

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Bedroom Poets

21 - 23

Nile Street

24 - 25

On This Day...

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This Nation’s Saving Grace - The Fall

Phosporescent - Wolves

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A New Dawn Fades

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Conspiracy

29 - 32

Listings

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On The Cover

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Do I Believe In Ghosts?

Tel: 0191 567 6770

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ISSUE #3 HALLOWEEN 2011 CONTRIBUTORS EDITOR: Richard Smith ASSISTANT EDITOR: Paul Burgess WRITERS: Richard Smith Martin Longstaff Dan Carson Morris Ford Glen Keogh Simon Whitehead Karen Burgess Dee Chaneva Ryan Neale Neil Wood K.A. Beestone Frank Styles R. Wilkinson ART/DESIGN: Christopher Atkinson Rebecca Young Paul Burgess www.pbgd.co.uk

PRINT:

kall kwik Sunderland

www.kallkwik.co.uk/sunderland/

www.kallkwik.co.uk/sunderland/

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ELCOME ALL to Little River Fanzine #3. Inside this issue, you will find all of the usual local and not so local demos, news, and reviews but also a good dose of dark and ghoulish content enough to keep you up at night in this, RICHARD SMITH

THE HALLOWEEN SP ECIAL.

Spirits of the Dead Thy soul shall find itself alone 'Mid dark thoughts of the grey tombstone Not one, of all the crowd, to pry Into thine hour of secrecy: Be silent in that solitude Which is not loneliness - for then The spirits of the dead who stood In life before thee are again In death around thee - and their will Shall then overshadow thee: be still. For the night - tho' clear - shall frown And the stars shall look not down, From their high thrones in the Heaven, With light like Hope to mortals given But their red orbs, without beam, To thy weariness shall seem As a burning and a fever Which would cling to thee for ever : Now are thoughts thou shalt not banish Now are visions ne'er to vanish From thy spirit shall they pass No more - like dewdrop from the grass: The breeze - the breath of God - is still And the mist upon the hill Shadowy - shadowy - yet unbroken, Is a symbol and a token How it hangs upon the trees, A mystery of mysteries!

Edgar Allen Poe

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LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


NEWS CHASED BY WOLVES LIVE

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HASED BY WOLVES will be playing a very special gig on the 12th of November in Sunderland Minster church. Support will come from special guests Reckoner and it is sure to be a night to remember!

For more info check out www.facebook.com/ chasedbywolves

PHOTO: IAN WEST

PHOTOS: IAN WES T

HYDE & BEAST TOUR

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YDE & BEAST are excited to announce their first ever UK Tour. To coincide they will release a new single, ‘You Will Be Lonely’ on November 14th. LIVE DATES: 6th November Newcastle, The Cluny 7th November Sheffield, The Harley 8th November Glasgow, Captain’s Rest 9th November Edinburgh, The Electric Circus 10th November Nottingham, Bodega 11th November Liverpool, Contemporary Urban Centre (Liverpool Music Week show) 13th November York, Fibbers 14th November Bristol, Louisiana

B>E>A>K

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ur feathered friends B>E>A>K play Sunderland’s Independent on the 11th of November. Be sure to make this one as it promises to be something special. www.facebook.com/BEAKSUNDERLAND

16th November London, Water Rats 17th November Manchester, Deaf Institute 18th November Stockton, The Georgian Theatre Tickets are on sale now from www.hydeandbeast.co.uk 5


LIVE REVIEWS SYMPHONIC PICTURES WEDNESDAY 10TH AUGUST was really looking forward to this gig, as all of the artists playing I had seen before and enjoyed. First up was The Matadors, a four piece band from Newcastle. I first saw these guys supporting Detroit Social Club, at Plugged Inn earlier in the year. With an almost flamenco guitar-driven sound reminiscent of Last Shadow Puppets/Arctic Monkeys, I was reminded how much the singer sounded like Alex Turner, so much so that the second song in their set could have easily been an Arctic Monkeys tune. Although the crowd was small, the band seemed to be well received. These guys don't have much between-song banter, they just dive from one song to another with a minimum of fuss. When they went into their 5th number, I was reminded of a cross between the Doors and Nick Cave, neither being a bad thing as I am a fan of both. They finished with a new one, 'Face Like Thunder' which was brilliant. Well worth checking out.

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Next up was Sunderland singer/ songwriter, The Lake Poets, to whom I am no stranger. Martin opened with 'Rain' and then went on to play my favourite, 'Windowsill'. Next up was 'Friends' (about "friends who are tossers"). Martin always likes to have a bit of banter between songs usually explaining the inspiration behind the lyrics. For the last few songs he was joined on stage by a bass player and finished with 'City By the Sea', which has become his regular set closer and always gets

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BURGESS PHOTO: PAUL

the audience going as it is a really catchy number. The next act on stage was duo Gallery Circus, who I had only seen for the first time a few weeks earlier, and was I excited about seeing them again as they had totally blown me away first time around. The duo are obviously influenced by Muse, who just happen to be one of my favourite bands. When listening to Gallery Circus, it is hard to believe that there are only two of these guys. I didn't know one drum kit and one guitar could create so much beautiful noise. Launching into 'Club House Killer', the frontman announced that the song was due out on video soon. This song reminded me of a Darkness hit (of which the name escapes me!). These lads have great stage presence, and are fantastic showmen. I've never seen anyone take command of drums the way this drummer does, sitting at, standing up and running around his kit like a man possessed, whilst his twin brother attacks the

LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


guitar and belts out the vocals. The next song, 'Hands up for the Hipsters', was slightly different to the previous songs, with an underlying funky beat. You can check these guys out at gallerycircus.com, and I would strongly recommend that you give them a listen. Even better, catch them live. It was now time for the headline act - Symphonic Pictures, and there was a really good crowd in the room. Two of the band are former members of the now defunct Detroit Social Club, but there is no detectable DSC influence. In fact, there sound is really psychedelic and very late-era Beatles with guitarist Johnny and keyboard player Dale, sharing vocal duties. This was the third time that I had seen this band and, their number swells each time. Tonight being joined by a saxophonist, who also contributed vocals on the third song. For me, the saxophone really brought another dimension and some depth to the songs and worked well. Next they played 'Bootstrap Paradox', which has become my favourite, and could have come straight from a Beatles album. This trippy tune makes me feel like I'm on something! An imaginary, accompanying video featuring spinning psychedelic wheels goes through my mind whenever I hear it! This band is just so different from any other act around right now. Again, I can't recommend them enough. It has to be said that, for me, this gig showcased some cracking north east talent, which seems to be flourishing and getting stronger all the time. And long may it continue.

ILLUSTRATION: AKY

KAREN BURGESS

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LIVE REVIEWS SONNER EP LAUNCH Saturday 3rd September

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fter a few minor setbacks the much anticipated Sonner EP launch had finally arrived, and I was excited! The Little Room at Independent, Sunderland, was host for the night, and there was already a good crowd taking shape. First up was Fatfield-based singer/songwriter Black Goose. There was quite a bit of narration and I was a little apprehensive, as I've often witnessed solo acoustic artists struggle against such noise. But this wasn't to be the case. This guy had a really distinctive, unusual and clear vocal, which dominated the room. His second song, for me, was very reminiscent of the Joy Division classic 'Love Will Tear us Apart', a song which I happen to love. Next number 'Polka Dot' was introduced as an acoustic version of a song by the artists' former band, You and Yourself. The set was quite varied, with songs different in both tempo and beat, and boy could he play guitar.

dedicating it to David Burn, former Detroit Social Club frontman and producer of the EP, who had came along on the night to catch the lads live. The brooding 'Prison Man', the second song on the EP, followed. This is my top Sonner song of choice (not least of all because it reminds me of Depeche Modes' 'Personal Jesus'). By now both audience and band were in high spirits, and singer Mick left the stage and ploughed into the crowd, causing a great stir, especially when he adopted a real rock stance and brandished his guitar above his head, whilst hammering away on the strings! It had taken a while for this night to happen, but, in the end it was well worth it. These lads have really worked hard, have some great anthemic tunes and are really entertaining. I would suggest that you buy the EP (available from http://www.amazingtunes.com/users/so nner) and try to catch them next time they play live. KAREN BURGESS

It was now time for headliners Sonner to take the stage. Opening with new song 'Back to the Border', they soon had the up-for-it crowd onside. The band are a four piece from Sunderland and surrounding County Durham, who describe themselves as "rock and roll with heart and soul", and that comment describes their music to a tee. They then played 'The Call', the first track on their new self-titled EP. Going on to play the crowd-pleasing 'Horizon', which didn't make the final cut, much to my surprise.They went on to play another favourite of mine, 'We Go Forth Tonight',

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LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


MY EXPERIENCE AT SPLIT.

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eing at Split this year was something else to me. My experience was unlike any other gig/festival I have ever attended before; this is due to the feeling of belonging that I felt from all the amazing people I shared the weekend with. It goes without saying that the music was out of this world and in my opinion the local bands did us proud. My personal highlight of the weekend was witnessing B>E>A>K take over the crowd and really get everyone involved, from the instruments handed to spectators to play along, to the feathers and confetti flying above the audiences heads, and who could forget the crowd surfing. Not to mention their amazing tunes that I could have listened to for the rest of the night. Walking away from their set I couldn’t help but feel an upbeat and positive energy from everyone who had been watching. The carnival like festival got even better when fully grown adults decided (after a few drinks no doubt) that it might be fun to get their faces painted and try their luck on the inflatable slide that was set up for the kids attending. This went about as well as you can imagine it to have! But to me it’s all about the people that attended, everyone there for a good time, good music and sharing good company. This was most apparent to me when asked afterwards how I enjoyed the headliners The Charlatans, I couldn’t answer as I had found myself sitting outside of the main stage tent with local musicians Chased by wolves, The Lake Poets, The Railway Club, This Little Bird, members of the B>E>A>K crew and Morris Ford sharing stories and laughing a lot. Despite all of this talent sitting together, we somehow found ourselves singing the theme tune to old T.V favourite Button Moon!! A night I won’t be forgetting any time soon.

PHOTO: SANdRA HEWITSON

RyAN NEAlE

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LIVE REVIEWS SPLIT PARADE

9/9/11

MAMMAL CLUB

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ollowing a hectic day of new music, exciting bands and the wisdom of Tom Robinson; Split Parade sees The Little Room host two of the buzz bands from a thrillingly busy north east music scene. Tyneside compound Mammal Club, consisting of elements from The Eye Jab and yourcodenameis:milo, are first up. They dive straight into The Au e.p through ‘Out of the Playground’, and I’m instantly hooked. The intricate keys and guitar lines walk hand in hand with each other, creating a quirky base for the million miles an hour vocal delivery of Wilson Astley.

Seriously, how does someone get that many syllables into such a small space?! Never mind. Their set progresses through the intoxicating repetitions in ‘Hang’ and the spectacular ‘Put Your Fears in Order’ which reminisces on the best bits of New Order and The Talking Heads. There is no escaping the lure of the slightly more delicate and un-named new song that they treat The Little Room to, but why would you want to escape it? Because with Mammal Club you always know that there is a massive chorus just around the corner and with set highlight ‘Otter’ it is positively monumental. Every eye is stage bound. Just the way it should be. NEIl WOOD LET’S BUY HAPPINESS, INDEPENDENT

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he condensation built up on the windows of the Little Room and collected on the forehead of Mammal Club’s Wilson Astley is some small indication of the temperature of Sunderland’s best small venue. It’s warm.

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Seriously warm. The frenetic glitch-pop purveyed by Mammal Club ought to contrast starkly with tonight’s headline act and fellow BBC Introducing alumni, Let’s Buy Happiness, whose sound seems to be perennially labelled ‘glacial’. Whether or not this is a derogative term, is about to be revealed, providing they haven’t melted due to the humidity before they can make it onstage. The band huddle together under the intense glow of the lighting, looking every inch the mischievous gang of cool kids who always claimed the back seat on the school bus, lead vocalist Sarah Hall, the redlipsticked ring leader conducts proceedings with a wry smile. They’re damn well tight, no doubting that and the honesty in Hall’s delivery is incredibly disarming, although we’re all clamouring for the moment when LBH kick it up a gear, they make for pretty compelling viewing nonetheless. ‘Dirty Lakes’ is precisely that moment. The show turns from meandering stream to irrepressible river in an instant and the wall between overheated audience and labouring band comes tumbling down amongst layers of Hall’s saccharine sweet tones, wistful harmonies and twinkling guitars. LBH are now in full flow and ‘Fast Fast’ recalls all the best bits of Foals’ ‘Blue Blood’ with the uncompromising, infectious progression of its throbbing bassline. Delay saturated closing number ‘Six Wolves’ thaws the last crystals of that supposed ‘glacial’ frontier surrounding the band, with its rousing chorus and pounding drums providing a fitting end to a spectacular celebration of raw, emerging talent in our region. DAN CARSON

LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


ILLUSTR ATION: KATHRYN ROBERTS ON

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DEMO/TRACK REVIEWS AJIMAL – ‘WOLF’

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f you are thus far unfamiliar with the work of Francis O’Hanlon, aka ‘Ajimal’ then shame on you. With a fascinating name inspired by a muchfeared Haitian voodoo witchdoctor, a spine tingling vocal acuity and lyrics that convey not only a deep intelligence but also provoke genuine emotion, Ajimal is an act you simply cannot afford to ignore. The focus of this piece is Ajimal’s most well known composition entitled ‘Wolf’. The song details Fran’s take on the complex and affecting dichotomy of emotions felt by German-Swiss Author, Poet and Painter Hermann Hesse as expressed in his 1927 novel ‘Steppenwolf’. Compositionally and lyrically ‘Wolf’ conveys the multifarious struggle of a man attempting to reconcile his Human and animalistic characteristics, a complex and engaging subject that in Hesse’s ‘Steppenwolf’ incorporates suffering and despair, transcendence and healing. As Fran puts it himself “This 'man', capable of rational thought, and reasoned debate is scared of connection, brutality, relationships, sexuality, cowers behind his intellect and hides from anything which might upset his balance, versus the 'Wolf', sexual and passionate and blood-thirsty and animalistic.” 12

The minimalist Piano led track is tremendously haunting, the accompanying Cello providing a darkly affecting alternative to the lingering falsetto of Fran. The song breaks down towards its central point only to swell to crescendo, down to once again an almost silence where the line “You cry when you fake it” is solemnly repeated, its tension hitting the listener with lethal accuracy. The songs completes with a swelling Piano and Cello outro that leaves the listener feeling optimistic and for one, staggeringly impressed. ‘Wolf’ is available for free download on Ajimal’s Soundcloud; I implore you to get it while you can. MARTIN lONGSTAFF http://soundcloud.com/ajimal LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


AMY HOLFORD – DEMOS

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he first song I'm greeted with from Amy is Sunflower. You can tell that the songs subject matter is very close to her, (Amy’s granddad) and is sang with a strong emotion and honesty. It’s angelic like soft picking and four chord pattern doesn’t get old but actually draws you into the song and makes you think about your own loves in life in a positive way when you listen to the lyrics. The significance of the sunflower is in reference to that her granddad had planted it and in turn brightened up the whole garden, which serves as a touching reminder of him. Delicate and graceful. Broken Boy Blues for me is the song that really shows off the versatility of Amy’s voice. About an ex who was old enough to know better but still acted like a boy, this song oozes attitude, flair and skill. You can’t help but nod your head to the trainlike rhythm to this bluesy tune.

CTORIA ANNA VI PHOTO:

It’s a treat to listen to and see where the song goes next with so many vocal juggles and impressive performance. Quality. This final song of Amy’s, ‘I Have Seen’ is really good. A reflection of ones faults wholeheartedly admitted is never an easy thing to come to terms with but she seems to encapsulate it all in the song and turn it into a positive thing. The lyrics “in demons they come to haunt me but I'm not the crying kind” really sticks out for me and the way it’s sang is just mind blowing, makes me think how good this girl is and how great she will become. MORRIS FORD HEAR THE DEMOS: http://soundcloud.com/amyholford LIKE HER PAGE: http://www.facebook.com/ amyholfordsinger

APHY PHOTOGR

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PHOTO: IAN WEST

MORRIS FORd WITH ALMOST FIFTEEN YEARS OF PLAYING AND PERFORMING HIS WARM AND EARNEST SONGS OF LOVE, LIFE AND SMALL TOWN FRUSTRATION UNDER HIS BELT, MORRIS FORD IS A BIT OF LOCAL HERO OF SINGER-SONGWRITER TYPES SUCH AS ME. Not content with simply being someone with a bank of past work many local musicians admire and love, Morris is thankfully still writing new material and performing it around the North East and further afield. Most recently he supported ‘leading lights’ of the acoustic music scene ‘Daughter’ and ‘Benjamin Francis Leftwich’ at Newcastle Riverside venue, where his set went down a storm. A prodigious writer and producer, Morris regularly updates his Soundcloud page with his latest output, unrestricted by the control of managers or agents, he simply writes and releases all for the love of making music. He is truly a musician’s musician and DIY to the core. Not only does Morris write beautifully affecting and poignant songs and release them himself, he

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has also branched out into the complex world of recording under the moniker ’67 Recordings’ (67 being the number of his house) Not many people have the skills to record a band well, yet Morris appears to be doing brilliantly for only having been doing it three months. Artists on his recording roster include myself, This Little Bird, Bison Hunting, Sonner and Amy Holford. With new material in the pipeline, offering affordable recording opportunities for unsigned North East talent and for generally being a really sound lad I would say you could do a lot worse than seek out Morris Ford. MARTIN lONGSTAFF http://soundcloud.com/morrisford http://twitter.com/morris_ford http://soundcloud.com/67recording http://twitter.com/67recording

LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


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c i n o h p m y S Pic ture s “WE JUST STARTED MAKING DEMOS ON THE SIDE WHILST WE WERE IN OUR LAST BAND THEN CREATED A MYSPACE AND THROUGH THAT ENDED UP MAKING A NAME…”

Symphonic Pictures seem quite laid back when it comes to the whole ‘success’ thing. I’m sitting opposite Johnny Bond and Dale Knight from the band on a rainy Saturday in Newcastle’s Cluny, which has always been the token venue for local musicians. After touring the world and releasing a critically acclaimed album with their last band Detroit Social Club, the pair seem comfortable being back at home. And chatting over a coffee its plain to see that Symphonic Pictures is what they have always wanted to do. Guitarist Johnny said: “We were always recording these songs throughout [DSC] but they wouldn’t have suited being played as that band. “It was the plan all along really, to do a side project when things had calmed down with them.” It’s a bold move for any new band to emerge from the shadow of a former outfit, but Dale, 21, and Johnny, 22, are still enviably young enough to start afresh and release the music 16

they’ve always wanted to.

The duo wrote the songs together, but since August they have recorded with a full band, completed by Ray Wright on bass, Nahema Adele who sings and plays saxophone and Ed Smith on drums. “It wasn’t going to be a 5 piece really it’s just kind of become that way. “The first gig we did was only as a three piece where we had drums on a sampler. Some people actually thought we should have kept it that way but we wanted that ‘real band’ vibe.” Symphonic Pictures are definitely playing in a vibe. Whilst it’s not necessarily original it’s still fresh. It’s the kind of music you can imagine angsty teens getting stoned to in five years’ time while they whinge about communism and socialism and any other ‘-ism’ they think will make them sound intelligent. But yes- this certainly is intelligent music. The big beat-psychedelia of Stellar Hopes swirls through Primal Scream hooks and layered vocals, led by Dale Knight’s impressive set of pipes. Their resemblance to MGMT is noticeable, and make of that what you will, but the band still seem to have so much more to offer. LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


quite refreshing after the past.” The lads don’t show any sign of slowing down and their decision to work full time on the band is definitely paying off.

“I’m inspired by a lot of krautrock and a lot of French pop, especially Serge Gainsbourg. He did an album called The Psychedelic Years (Les Annees Psychedeliques) and I still think that’s one of the most inspiring albums to listen to.”

Dale leans back into the sofa and tells me that they’re even writing new stuff whilst they’re in the studio, some of the new songs inspired by lifelong love affairs with artists, others written while listening to relatively new bands. Johnny said: “I’m inspired by a lot of krautrock and a lot of French pop, especially Serge Gainsbourg. “He did an album called The Psychedelic Years (Les Annees Psychedeliques) and I still think that’s one of the most inspiring albums to listen to.” Dale cites new bands, like Yuck, as a more recent influence,especially on the songs they’ve been recording in the last couple of days prior to the interview but the pair agree on the new direction of the songs.

An imminent release in the form of either an EP or album through local label Cottage Industries will feature Stellar Hopes as its lead track because, as Johnny describes: “it’s got a bit of a hook in it and it does sound like it could be a single.

“It’s definitely starting to sound more shoegazey.

“It’s not too long whereas I think when we come to the release a lot of the other songs are going to be a bit too fucking…weird.”

“But I think that’s coming from writing to be played as a band now as well. It’s sort of veering a little bit away now.

A host of acoustic tracks posted on YouTube also give an indication of how good this band could be.

“When it started it was just sort of psychedelic pop.

Dale and Johnny are more than happy to talk about the kind of music they’re making, and I can’t help but feel that Symphonic Pictures is a by-product of years of yearning to be free from some of the musical constraints placed by major labels. The release through Cottage Industries gives the pair the free reign they’ve always craved. “From what we’ve done in the past it’s going to be nice to work with someone who has approached us just because they love the music and they’re not really looking for anything more. “The deal we have is literally so they can put out music they like, which is

“The newest songs definitely sound more like they should be played by a band and they’ll probably come across better live. But yeah, in terms of influences it’s very wide and varied.” Symphonic Pictures can be anything they want to be, and no doubt their next release will see them catapulted back into the lifestyle they left behind. But for now, embrace them, and see them live in small venues while you have the chance. They will be playing a special show at Newcastle’s Boulevard on November 12th, and trust me; you don’t want to miss it. GlEN KEOGH 17


SHORT STORY

All That Sheila Loved The faint morning sunlight filtered through a gap in the curtains. It spread across one side of the double-bed in a thin beam- illuminating the empty space. The pillow, still with a head-shaped dint where he had lain, but now a sickly yellow undoubtedly the result of Sheila’s forty-a-day habit and years of disuse. That side of the bed reeked of hollow memories and shed tears. Sheila DeLuca lay on her side of the bed. Her hand reached out to that stretch of empty land on the other side, the comparative desert of plain white sheet. That hand searched- yearned. Fingers wrapped around empty air. Loneliness seemed to taint the room like poison- the sadness and heartache palpable. She could taste it’s bitterness in her mouth. How many times had she dreamt of him now? Of that stupid taxi sideswiping her husband in a blinding flash of yellow that had robbed him of his life? And of herself, standing therehelpless on the sidewalk with wide eyes? Oh she hadn’t believed it at first. No, no, no, such a thing was surely

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an impossibility, some cosmic mistake? Someone would put it right. Had to, otherwise she would go stark-raving crazy. Couldn’t bring up a child on her own could she? An eternity. She would dream of him until her dying day. His name the last breath on her lips. If she dreamed in the after-life it would be of his eyes- usually so calm and brown, sheened with a faint layer of fear. His final moments. Lucy started wailing from the room next door. Early again- face scrunched up until it was blue and her fat little fists pumping. Sheila would feed her and then crawl back into bed. Too far sunk to do anything else. She was a stone, she thought sourly, just one little pebble going under. Like the Titanic. Yes, that analogy would suit her well. She could only pray that Chris would steal back to her through the threaded tangle of her dreams- if only for a brief moment. *** “Do you dream of me?” His voice called out in the darkness.

Tantalizingly close and yet still out of reach. Maddening. A constant torment. “Yes,” she whispered. “Yes, I do.” “Do you still love me? Still want me back? Still want me to be a father to Lucy?” She nodded vehemently. “DO YOU MISS ME?” The voice rose to a tremendous crescendo, crashing down around Sheila’s ears like waves of noise echoing like feedback. In her sleep she nodded, and she was still nodding when she woke, the heavy weight of a hand in hers. *** Ghostly fingers caressed her palm- smooth and cool to the touch like glass. Strange, for a moment Sheila could have sworn blind that she’d been hallucinating. But ohh, what a wonderful dream to be having! If the price for this was losing her marbles then she’d offer it up right away- on a silver platter! Chef’s special my dear sir, a piece of Sheila DeLuca’s sanity. Finely roasted to perfection.

LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


Those warm brown eyes though, those she could not have just imagined. Golden hair like a halo and the soft teasing smile of the man she’d fallen in love with all those years ago. A decade of memories revealed by a single pull of his lips. Upward, slight tint, a slight hint of mischief and magic-unmistakable. Sheila didn’t pause to wonder how he had returned to her, nor even noticed the difference in his appearance. Her brain supplied its own set of tricks- hiding her from the harsh reality. In actual fact his eyes were a watery red- one pupil burst open like a rotting fruit. Pale skin scarred and gaunt around his bones, hanging from his frame in tattered ribbons. The fingers he wrapped around Sheila’s were slim yellowing bones, spider-webbed with hairline fractures where they’d cracked. But Sheila remained oblivious- pressed her lips down upon the dead man’s. Felt the crush of his flaking skin, peeling from the bones that formed his face like some grotesque paper doll. “Sheila,” he said. “It’s time to go.” “No, no!” She hissed, hands clutching so hard at his that his bones

crunched and ground together. Shards of glass, conflicting sounds- an orchestra of dead sounds that should never have been heard by the living. “I’m not letting you go, not yet!” Chris surveyed his wife’s face for a moment- trying to keep his voice soft and reassuring. “I’m not leaving you. I’ve come to collect you.” He gently broke their tight embrace. “You died in your sleep, dear.” Oh. I’m dead? But that was absurd wasn’t it? That she could be dead? Was somebody losing their marbles? (What do you expect dear, you’re seeing ghosts that have been buried for long enough? Hallucinating, dear you are halllooooooccciiiinnnnaaatttiiinnngggg…) Yes, she’d lost her marbles. Left them lying all over the floor, waiting for the opportune moment when they could just trip someone up. But she didn’t care. So long as she had Chris she just couldn’t give a flyingfig. So she just stared at him instead- horror, confusion and delight chasing each other across her face. “What about Lucy?”

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“She’s safe. Claire called round this morning- got that new boyfriend of hers to break the door down when you didn’t answer. I’m sorry-“ “Don’t be,” Sheila said. She meant it too. Didn’t care that she was dead, didn’t even want to know why. Lucy was safe, and that was the very best that she could do for her daughter. God knew that she’d tried- tried to be a good mother (But she’d been losing her marbles ever since that stupid taxi-) But she’d never really climbed far enough out of the sunken-hole of her own depression. Lucy would have a good life now- a new start. Better than what Sheila had ever had. “It’s time to go,” Chris said. Sheila didn’t feel herself panicking. A wave of numbness washed over her - like Novocain. Acceptance. She took hold of her husband’s hand, still smooth in her own and walked into the darkness with him. “I love you, Chris,” she said. When the sunlight became stronger, it fell on an empty double-bed. by K.A. BEESTONE

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THESE DARK NIGHTS...

Spiderland WHAT WERE THE REASONS BEHIND THESE PORTENTOUS SOUNDS?

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hat was the mystery surrounding the boys from Slint and their hugely influential Touch and Go released album Spiderland? While on the surface the disturbed murmurings of vocalist Brian McMahan coupled with angular guitars and peculiar musical structure oozes weird, there was always a sense of something unseen going on behind the scenes. The lyrics were made to be whispered into a subconscious ear during those moments prior to sleep paralysis and it is inevitable this asphyxiated storytelling will have an effect on dreams. Don’t for one minute think that these whisperings can be ignored, they are only meant to be heard by those that are willing to listen, not that the you have a choice. Should this be momentarily forgotten, the screams of McMahan will remind you. The album fires though the

emotions in under 40 minutes, the product of a mere four days of recording and yet somehow this album is certainly not rushed. Each emotion is carefully described through tales of lost sailors, young children, pirates and fortune tellers to name a few. Scenarios created to lull the listener into an alien world full of sinister yet beautiful beings. The music itself wants listeners to be reminded that they should feel safe throughout yet brief encounters with love, the loss of the past, the rejection and the feel of pity in each heart wrenching scream of “I’m sorry…I miss you” ensures that this tale certainly isn’t one to forget for a long time. The band themselves weren’t so safe either. Producer Brian Paulson has described the recording as being a “stay-up-all-night-until-you-can'tsee-anymore” affair and the goings on during that period has become a thing of mystery. Reports arose that members of the band were institutionalised after the traumatic recording session. Not only were they affected mentally but the album appeared to mark the end of Slint full-stop after a short run of just two LPs and one EP yet in 2005 and 2007 the band reunited to play shows in the US and Europe and released a composition named King's Approach. Unfortunately for fans, however, no further information or speculation as to a permanent reunion nor any other recordings. This is not music to sip pumpkin juice to this Halloween. SIMON WHITEHEAD

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LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


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20 Something 20 Something wakes up, In a room fulla strangers He slips out the back door, He makes his way down the high street Buys the paper and stops; Just long enough to read the headline: Man jumps in river at midnight 20 Something 20 Something got drunk last night, And the one before, He fell down in the street He threw up. He knows he should be looking for a job today But he can't really see the point Not seen as Tom said he'll do him a tenner, tonight, till tuesday: What's the rush, he thinks 20 Something 20 something today Dreams impossible dreams, He sleeps with strangers And longs for release. He goes out on friday Comes home on Monday, Can't even remember sunday,

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He's shit scared He's sure of himself. He says you can all go to hell And he is crying in a nightclub Alone with the wrong woman Which reminds me There was a girl once, one time he says but sure enough gone she were off. I can't blame her much like he says though I mean, Not much round here for her Its not much cop, Career opportunities they said Well yes an no but, I mean, used to be you could get a factory job save up a wad But now even thats gone. If you ask me, I'll tell ya what: I think were all fucked Bound to be check out morons and such 20 something 20 something 20 something Yet in all of this 20 Something has only one real burning issue of concern... What the fuck is he gonna do when he's 30 something

MARK WYNN

LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


The Grey

Anon

The grey is creeping in.

Well I've travelled over rivers and the things that i have seen going to make me the man that i want to be.

Magnetic, drawn towards the giant’s tuning fork he has left, Wedged into the roof. And this breeze is just a mirage,

For the words i can speak and the things that i say Could never describe The one that got away.

It isn’t really cold. Even the birds are afraid to sing,

Well i've been on many roads and weathered long nights But i don't want to fight anymore.

Half stifled tunes whisper ‘Come away, come away’ The grey is creeping in. PLEASE CLOSE THE GATE! It only takes a second,

For the feelings we felt on those long summer days Could never describe the one that got away. The stars on the lake and good company shared will they ever know how much we cared?

And we are only safe, Here, In the circle.

ANDREW PARK

The tingling of chimes through the window i heard. Lying next to me thought that i'd never hurt. Well now I'm back home and the romance will fade. But i'll never forget those long summer days... The night on the lake with good company shared i'll never forget that wind in my hair So farewell paradise So long my sweet love I'll remember you when i look above.

STEVEN CALDER

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A WhiSTLE SToP TouR of ThE CREATiVE VENuES iN

LooK ouT of SuNDERLANDS RAiL STATioN WiTh WiLKoS iN fRoNT of You AND TuRN YouR hEAD To ThE LEfT. Walk past the grey haired gentleman and his bags, dodge the buses then take a 2 minute walk down Athenaeum St. You'll pass 'the Place' on your left and come to Sunniside Gardens. Behold Sunniside! Marvel in the landscaped grass, fountains and coloured lights, note the skater friendly street furniture then walk diagonally across it and step on to Coronation Street. From here you'll see Creative Cohesion on the corner with NILE STREET. Sunniside is hailed as Sunderland's 'Cultural Quarter' and over the past couple of years has in reality became a hub for the cities creative community. Creative Cohesion is the first stop on this tour and here you might find the likes of Roger Tye doing things such as fabricating his own furnace for use in the glass blowing hotshop, Liz Shaw spinning her ceramic bowls ready to be fired on site and if it's a Thursday - Saturday between 10am and 4pm (Gallery opening hours) you might find Joanne Mitchell taking a break from her Glass Design PHD to invigilate the latest exhibition. It's a pretty cool place populated by extremely creative and friendly people. A great place to find some bespoke artwork, from the amazing glass sculptures of Stephen Beardsell to the

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intricately stencilled butterflies crafted by yours truly. Pop in or search for 'cohesion and friends' on Facebook. Across the road on Nile Street you'll find Studio 47. These guys provide band rehearsal space, on a good day you might be lucky enough to over hear the likes of The Generals, Frankie and the Heartstrings, The Real Davina and it has even been rumoured our beloved feathered friends B>E>A>K have been known to practice here. Kelly Woods, the manager at Studio 47 has told me they also run Foundation learning in music, training 16-18 year olds on instruments and all the other skills you'll need to go from making a noise to being in a successful band. (Travel costs are paid for and some are eligible for a bursary) the also offer Creative Apprenticeships. For more info please call 0191 5678700 or Facebook 'Studio 47'. Carrying on down Nile Street and you'll find Studio Infinite on the left. The word Studio is a recurring theme on nile street. (If you're not a car garage, car valet or furniture warehouse you are obliged to use the word studio in your name, Cohesion got round this by saying they corner with Coronation Street, but, well, I digress‌ ) Studio Infinite is a very low key affair with a subtle wooden and glass front, run by Pauline Taylor whom today, I have found helping Rachel Brewin to hang a solo show in the exhibition space. Ged McCormack Architect works in his spacious office above.

LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


Rachel's paintings and prints are on display until November 30th, by appointment only. (Lovely calming landscapes + townscapes, well worth a look) Please do make an appointment, Ged and Pauline are very welcoming and will probably give you a biscuit or maybe even a banana. Pauline can be reached on info@infinitearts.co.uk and Rachel on rachel.bru@gmail.com Further still down Nile Street you shall find the infamous Studio Q! (This is my place by the way). Primarily we are art studios, though we occasionally put on exhibitions that attract the cream of Sunderland's underground cultural hounds, open studio events, happenings, gigs and BBQ's. A few faces you might find down here: doing strange things to barbie dolls: Lesley Ellen Cooperwaite, painting abstracted abstract landscapes: Fred Fowler, or rehearsing her latest Hip Hop Hula routine: Penella Bee. More info on these crazy people at studioq.biz On December the 1st, we are pleased to announce the opening of Quire Exhibition, curated by guest curator - Paul le Hat (Ace of Space, Big Ugly Fish Recordings). Here comes the arty bit, concentrate: Quire’s aim is to present works by musicians who also explore and reveal their “visual intelligence” in the forms of photography, painting, sculpture,

installation and other forms of visual art. So basically a celebration of visual art made by musicians, which, if you've read this far, is probably right up your street. So remember Thursday 1st December - Studio Q - 6-9pm. Our opening nights are fairly well renowned (to Sunderland's underground cultural hounds) for being a cheap, fun night out that also provides a 'culture shot' that will help you scramble over the mountains of dull, conforming and generic bullshit that we strive to co-exist with on a daily basis. On leaving Studio Q I recommend you walk around the back of the building and check out the mothers day flowers, (spraycan art by frankstyles.com – me again) then walk through the archway, turn left, pass Lunch and Go (cracking food at cracking value by the way), past Hustler (Cracking clothes sold by cracking burlesque stars) and you'll find Ursula Apreda's place. Ursula sells her paintings from here and offers painting lessons, so if you've had a good look at frankstyles.com (shameless plug) and spray painting ain't your thing, why not commission Ursula to paint a portrait for your mum? I hope you've enjoyed this little tour of Nile Street, now go out and spread the word about December the 1st. Yours shamelessly, FRANK STylES

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On ThiS Day...” ...A look at past goings on in the music world.

L

ove him or loathe him, The Fall’s Mark E. Smith knows how write a mean album. Just as well really as the man appears to have a mean streak as wide as Rihanna’s forehead.

His off-stage antics have became as well known, if not more so, than the music that he creates. The most recent example I can think of being around this time last year where Smith took a disliking to those “retarded Irish folk singers” (his words not mine) the “Sons of Mumford” aka Mumford and Sons to the point where he found it necessary to personally bottle them before they had even finished their warm up. While I am not a fan of the Sons of Mumford, the idea of bottling a young band prior to even starting their performance is not one that would have crossed my mind and I am not entirely sure whether they would have annoyed me so much with their vocal warm ups in their “sort of chalet” (his words again) as to deserve a bottling from a man whose temper and at one point almost constant drug use has torn apart his own gigs throughout the band’s history. Yet for some reason people (myself included) quite simply can’t get enough of this man and his band. And yes,it is his band. After all he is the only constant member since forming the band in 1976. That alone doesn’t sound too bad really but considering there have been over 60 (yes, that’s right 60!) members of the band, a picture is painted of how difficult this man must really be. The amazing thing is that aside from this huge turnover of ‘staff’ the music is generally very good with its guitar driven tracks and 26

repetitive nature coupled with the cryptic, often nonsensical yet poetic lyrics of Smith. Although Smith publicly declared on live BBC football broadcast, Score on Saturday (the same broadcast where he tells presenter Ray Stubbs that his haircut makes him look like an escaped strangler), that he had no idea how many albums that he had actually released, one that he must surely remember is the album from September 1985 titled “This Nation’s Saving Grace”. The album continues the band’s theme of chaotic post-punk do-whatever-I-want music to an absolute tee whilst hinting at future elements of electronics in the pipeline. It must be noted that I do not class Smith’s experimental, shall we call it, tape cut-up version of the song “Paint Work” where he accidentally taped over the original recording as a move towards electric but it sure does make for some interesting listening. The album simply explodes with a fantastic energy throughout even in some of the more poppy numbers. Even some of the b-sides are classic Fall songs (see “Pretty Thief Lout” as a fine example). Whether you are new to the band and looking for an introduction or a die-hard fan of the Fall, the band are playing Riverside in Newcastle on 4th November. SIMON WHITEHEAD LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


A SONG REVIEW BY DEE CHANEVA

PhOSPhOreScenT - WOlveS FROM PRIDE ( 2007)

I

can feel it coming. I can see the clouds in the little crevice between my half-drawn curtains. I can see the clouds go grey, I can see them getting ominous. The sun in Scotland only shines till 12 pm so afterwards we all make the best we can. I am gonna go to LIDL at 2 pm, buy a six-pack knowing that it's only gonna make me ticklish and I'm gonna go back for a bottle of wine and a quarter of whiskey not even 2 hours after. I listen to Glasser for a bit, as they are upbeat and dreamy, with a falsely incorporated pop-adjusted psychedelic and I wish I was like that but I have an underlying sadness that goes deeper than a few lyrical chords within a storm of euphoria could ever cater for. I finish the six pack of 'insert name of an European beer brand on offer at Lidl' and I wish I had stayed sober. I always wish I had stayed sober, maybe then I'd hear music the way it is and not the way my alcohol-indulgent mood swings. But who the hell even does that, hearing music the way it is; that would mean there is one singular reality we all belong to. And there isn't. On this day I listen to Wolves, by Phosphorescent. I have been clear for months, I took my pills, got over my ex, had an amazing job, passed my year at college, lost some friends, gained new ones. I lived. By a weird draw of fate I was listening to this. I decided as everything was going so well, I'd go off the pills. Take my life in my own hands. Again. And I combined the fight for my life and

the comedown of Paroxetine with listening to Phosphorescent. I can feel it coming. The imminent hit that depression is gonna take at me. Sad music and my impending Seratonin fallout. Two minuses don't make a plus. They make a completely different universe. A universe where the blizzards are unstoppable, for months now. All hearts are broken. Everything's been ruined, by me or by my order. But the sun still rises, and it makes me gasp and wonder if, at 4 am, I should even be up. Everything is gone and I can never fill the hole, but God I can sure finally breathe in the emptiness. My old thoughts, the sane ones, are a bunch of stray cats, meowing a few neighbourhoods down, I never know if they are fucking or fighting but they're sure not coming home. There are the wolves, that's why I don't want to come out. They are waiting, they know it won't be long now that I'm gonna have to exit. And they're the only real, admirable thing I have in my life. When you are gone from the normal premise of life, everything is an alien, but the monsters clawing at your door, mating in order for them to be more, you believe in those. They are home. I've lived with beasts. Under the 20 metres of snow. I've lived with beasts in my head and in my heart. I eventually learnt to heed the violence. And my impermanence and the white deserts of snow insurmountable. Mama I tried to put them out. DEE CHANEvA

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A NEW dAWN

FAdES ARE THE GOVERNMENT DOING ENOUGH TO NURTURE OUR LOCAL TALENT?

T

he government recently announced plans to cut the red tape constraining local music scenes by reducing and in some cases abolishing the fees for a live music licence. As part of the Licencing Act of 2003, local promoters needed to pay through the nose for a music licence to showcase up and coming talent across the UK. Clearly, something has to change if our budding artists are to flourish and hone the most important part of their overall package, the live show. A dossier circulated by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport in late September, indicates that there are plans in place to slash the cost of a music licence for small scale venues with a capacity of fewer than 5,000 people. On the surface, this appears to be potentially great news for the local scene in Sunderland. However, after further investigation, the government’s plans are unfortunately misleading. A vast proportion of our city’s most regularly used music venues are licenced to serve alcohol as well as showcase live music. Stashed away in the finest of fine print, beneath the flashy Tory headlines promising to free up venues and nurture a new generation of musicians, is the fact that as well as no proposals to cut any red tape in this sector there 28

will actually be an increase in costs for venues wishing to showcase live music and serve alcohol in tandem. Local authorities will also be handed additional powers when it comes to deciding who can host events, how late they can run, controlling the noise level and vetoing any event they believe will impact upon nearby residents. This could lead to less live music than ever before, the closure of our regions venues and in doing so could stunt the growth of so much raw talent in the North East. A statement from the DCMS suggested that more than 13,400 premises would no longer be subject to the Licensing Act under the new guidelines. While this can only be good news for live music shows mat community projects, local schools and outdoor venues, the lack of deregulation for the likes of The White Room and Independent will no doubt leave a sour taste in the mouths of local promoters. The onus, it would appear, remains on our hardworking grass roots musicians to provide more eclectic shows than ever before. Practice rooms, bandstands, local parks and rented warehouses could all play host to the next crop of exciting talent to emerge from Sunderland in 2012. It might not be the revolution we were all hoping for, but it’s a start. DAN CARSON LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


CONSPIRACY

*AN EVIL OR SURREPTITIOUS PLAN fORmULATEd IN SECRET BY TWO OR mORE PEOPLE.

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The boom of conspiracy theories really began with the assassination of John F Kennedy. Lee Harvey Oswald had (supposedly) fired several shots from the book depository murdering JFK on that historical day in Dallas. Still, 48 years later, we attempt to guess who was really behind this terrible tragedy. Was it Communists protecting Fidel Castro? Could it have been the Mob desperately trying to cling to their drug trafficking businesses? Or could it have been closer to home? The CIA was facing massive scrutiny from the president. He in fact said, “Something very bad is going on with the CIA and I want to know what it is. I want to shred the CIA into a thousand pieces and scatter them to the four winds.” With so many witnesses with different accounts and evidence that couldn’t stand up in court with two crutches, well…As you will probably find throughout this article, physical hard evidence is hard to come by in this world of controversial theories and finger pointing. It seems this particular mystery may never be solved, but the truth is never buried for long. Of course conspiracies have been in existence long before JFK. There has been a long felt paranoia throughout humankind since we developed what we see as civilised society. This conspiracy has been known as The Round Table group but more recently known as The New World Order. The idea is that of a totalitarian one world government with a global secret agenda. 30

“ORdER OUT Of CHAOS” THE NEW WORLd ORdER dICTUm It has been widely argued as to who exactly is running this show. In the past it was rumored to have been religious groups but in more recent times capitalists are at the centre of this conspiracy. Since WWII conspiracy theorists have claimed that the New World order has developed a vessel to hide behind, The United Nations. The UN as you may know is a world bank that supplies international funds. They make decisions in a world court. It even has its own army, ironically named ’the peace keepers’. And to you and me the UN just seems like an extension of the US and British army just searching for oil. No more corrupt than what we come to understand as a normal government. But there are many in the USA who believe that the UN is plotting to take away their freedoms. They believe that one day, black helicopters and UN trucks will invade their homeland and remove America’s constitutional rights and, in turn, force them all into slavery as pawns of the New World Order. It was Jim Keith who exposed

secret UN bases in America and claimed that they were planning to attack the USA with ’back engineered’ alien technology, which had also been kept locked behind the UN army base walls. But with all seriousness, the UN may not have had this imaginative agenda, but most likely has a much simpler one, money. My thoughts are that it’s more likely to be evils such as the C.E.O.s of Wall Street, Banks and the multi-billionaires in this world who are seeking financial control over us, which in turn does equate to our freedoms in this day and age. We see loan companies and banks getting people in more debt than they can pay off in their lifetimes. We become slaves to monetary gain, seeing a person’s bank statement as a way a telling a person’s worth, whilst the truth eludes us because we are too wrapped up in where the next pay cheque is coming from. We have forgotten, to a certain extent, that a person’s possessions don’t make them, but their actions do. We’re so busy building nest eggs for ourselves we don’t notice the financial terrorists, hiding in conference rooms, gambling our money and our homes on dividends and loose investments, slowly paying their way into governmental pockets to eventually enable them to strip our democracy in exchange for something much more worrying.

LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


PLUTONOmYECONOmIC GROWTH THAT IS POWEREd ANd CONSUmEd BY THE WEALTHIEST UPPER CLASS Of SOCIETY This would mean that in order to vote you would have to be one of the richest in your country. In America the wealthy upper class consists of only 1% of the population. They earn more than the entire bottom 95% put together, so in effect, only 1% of the country would be able to vote. And it has been rumoured that the idea is spreading around the world. This is the New World Order, essentially, a destruction of our freedoms by a relentless greed that is much more powerful than us all. And without our ability to vote, what freedom do we truly have? Many have sacrificed themselves for their democratic rights. It’s not often that humanity is pushed so far as to destroy itself to make a point, which makes me feel, that if something is worth dying for, it must be worth fighting for. Most conspiracies end with sacrifice. As with the belief of alien life, doctors, scientists and seemingly normal people can end up losing their credibility when chasing the

truth in this vast storm of speculation. Are they not sacrificing something too? When you invest so much energy into something that can get you put in a mental institution, are you not sacrificing your family and friends’ respect? And in turn isolating yourself from them? When something like this is regarded so widely as science fiction, why would a person risk this loss unless they were convinced of its possibility? Alien abduction is seen as having the least conclusive evidence, as it consists of only the abductees’ account of events. People are known to be able to become in such ill mental health that they can believe and react to things that are clearly not there. There are psychedelic drugs that make the users imagine the devil coming out of the floor to take them away. We can get post-traumatic stress syndrome that can completely block harmful memories. So I can see why it’s hard to take such a story seriously, but we can’t just dismiss every account for mental illness or drug abuse. We can however, look for trends in the claims around the world to see if this can give any clearer evidence. The first abduction claim was made in 1961. Betty and Barney Hill were returning from a trip to Niagara Falls. They noticed a bright white light following their car. They pulled over to get a better look at the light. Barney Hill claims that he saw the light was in fact a UFO, and that he saw the craft begin to open. The couple then escaped in the car. A short while after they heard a strange bleeping noise and

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then a blinding white light. They woke up several miles away from where they last recalled being and claim that they lost two hours of time. The next day Barney reported their experience to the local air force base and it was recorded in Project Blue Book but as a case with “insufficient” evidence. The couple began to experience insomnia and nightmares and decided to try and get help. They went to Dr. Benjamin Simon, a psychiatrist who gave them a separate treatment of hypnotherapy. They both recalled being kidnapped by little grey men, who spoke to them telepathically. Betty claimed that she had some kind of pregnancy test performed on her and then was shown the exact location of the alien home sun on an astral chart. They were then both returned to their car. This story seemed to create an explosion of claims across the USA, all with a similar story to that of the Hills. This phenomenon wasn’t just exclusive to the USA neither was it fully wide spread. In South America the aliens have been described as dwarf like and hairy, and in Britain they have mostly been described as blonde, blue eyed and tall with a friendly aura. So what does this mean? Are there several types of aliens out there who decided amongst themselves separate territories for harvesting humans on earth? Or is it just a mental illness that twists legends and myths that we already subconsciously hold in our minds into a psychotic episode. Like the theory that 31


when we die, the light at the end of the tunnel is just a calming vision brought on by your hormones and chemicals being released within death to ease the process. Or could it be that the actual beings in the abduction are in fact, so incomprehensible that we replace the image with something we can comprehend but that are equally mystical?

IT IS AmERICA WHICH IS BEST KNOWN fOR ITS ABdUCTIONS. In 1991 research was done into alien abduction. It stated that 2% of (at that time) a 300 million population claimed to have been abducted by aliens and most of them more than once. They deduced that the average amount of abductions that took place each day would have had to have been 2,740! It does sound like a lot of abductions to be going unnoticed, but if you think about the amount of people who die every day, and how we don’t see people dropping dead in the street all the time then, maybe it’s not so hard. Plus, if these aliens are as intelligent as people claim they are and are plotting something secret, why wouldn’t they do a very good job of ensuring no one found out? And it seems to me, that there’s many reasons for 32

them to come visit us. We have good resources. We are the only planet of its kind that we’ve found so far. The human species, although it sounds grand to say, is unique from other animals. Could it be possible that the aliens see us like a nature reserve, probing, tagging and tracking our progress from afar, to ensure they don’t affect us and our environment too much? Or that the earth is a giant lab and we are the rats? Or maybe our presence on earth is just creating an atmosphere more suited to them and the abductions are a way to track evolution to check we aren’t adapting to our surroundings as we affect our ozone layer. But for whatever reasons they come here, we need to discover the truth behind the abductees’ stories before we can make proper judgement. Is there a reason why this person may have made these claims in the first place? Attention? Previous personality disorders? Could it be a repression of an unthinkable memory? Has the world been watching too many films? The criticisms are endless but so are the possibilities and I like to believe that if this existence is infinite then the possibilities are infinite too, so isn’t it possible that whatever we can imagine could be true? This is definitely food for thought and I imagine I’ve left you with more questions than full answers, but this is the true nature of conspiracies. It seems the deeper you look the more

suspects you find and the more open the possibilities become. If we were all willing to at least contemplate them then maybe we might have made steps forward in terms of life, spirituality and science, but because we are far too eager to dismiss the unexplained we pass up the chance of exploring that mystery. And isn’t this the agenda of those behind most conspiracies? To make the truth so ridiculous that we couldn’t possibly take it seriously? And to bury the evidence and those who wish to free it? Shouldn’t we take every claim of criminality as seriously as the next? Or is the problem at the root of every life line for these poor souls who want nothing more but to be believed? Is it too late to stop the evils that are already in motion? Or will the truth expose itself, becoming too heavy to conceal, showing its ugly face before it’s too late? I’d like to believe that it’s just the ramblings of a mad man, that the truth is our governments are acting in our interest and doing the best they can for what’s right. That it’s only the minority that plan to hurt others to gain for themselves. I’d love to believe that we are just an anomaly in the cosmos, a tiny flicker built out of chance and improbability. That one day we can live without fear, discrimination and hate, and all we need to do is evolve to the next level. But I have always been a romantic fool. R. WIlKINSON

LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


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WHATS ON THIS HALLOWEEN IN SUNDERLAND? 28th October

29th October

SUNDERLAND INDEPENDENT

SUNDERLAND INDEPENDENT

SUMONSTEROUS @ Sumo Sunderland

Beetlejuice V Rocky Horror Show Hallowe'en Party @ INDEPENDENT

28th October

SUNDERLAND INDEPENDENT (THE LITTLE ROOM) Dead Friends/Spookends: Lilliput, The Railway Club & John Egdell

29th October

PLUGGED INN Halloween night

INFORMATION CORRECT AT TIME OF GOING TO PRESS.

On the cover... THIS ISSUE’S COVER ARTIST This Issue’s wonderful cover was designed by the very talented SARAH HALL. Sarah is an artist in every sense of the word, not only is she able to create her own brand of drawings and paintings, Sarah also sings in Newcastle based band Let's Buy Happiness.

We would like to thank Sunderland City Council for the help they have given us for getting this Little River out to you all!

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LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011


Do I believe in ghosts? L

ong are the days gone when I could get away with dressing up as a vampire and knocking on peoples doors (sadly) but now that I’m older what does Halloween mean to me? For me it still means all of the same things that it used to but now with a more twisted/unhinged knowledge of life, maybe realising that all those things of nightmares might just be more real than we think. The idea of the spirits of people living on after death, creatures in lakes and the undead crawling back up to earth to feast on the brains of the living is something that fascinates me and always will, but where does it all come from? Supposedly the origins of Halloween come from the ancient Celtic festival known as Samhain. The Samhain is a celebration of the end of the harvest and it was believed that on October 31, the boundaries between the two worlds of the living and the dead crossed over and the dead come back to life and cause havoc on the living. (Now that's a better story than a christmas carol, i'd rather be at that party any day.) Over time I think the meaning of Halloween has slowly changed and time itself has created a far more terrifying concept of what Halloween means to us now. With movies playing a giant part in this, films like the Halloween series itself with the crazed serial killer Micheal Myers or the newer movies like Paranormal Activity. These films are all designed to terrify us all and they do instantly become part of our own Halloween. As kids we were all brought up on urban legends and myths, even threatened with the bogey man if we stayed up too late or ventured from our streets. From the start the idea of ghouls and monsters

under our beds has been with us all, leaving many of us with an already fully formed opinion on these matters by the time we are in our early teens. Most of us every Halloween would carve a pumpkin, dress up, trick or treat, and stain our clothes with fake blood! I think that what makes ghosts and ghouls and things that go bump in the night so terrifying, is that they make every single one of us go back to our child-like selves. Even if its just for a split second we all let our imaginations run wild and that's the best thing we can do. In a world that is slowly becoming more and more numb to the old ways, where kids haven't got time to be scared because they're too busy downloading a new app for the iphone17 or standing in their living room with an xbox simulating running outside, i think its about time you realised there was a creepy old women living in an old creepy house at the top of a hill at the end of your street. Like a good friend said, I think we all need to remember why we fear the dark. So do I believe in ghosts? damn right I do. SO GO OUT OF YOUR WAY TO HAVE A TERRIFYING HALLOWEEN. RICHARD SMITH

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LITTLE RIVER FANZINE #3 Halloween 2011

Little River #3 HALLOWEEN EDITION  

Little River #3 HALLOWEEN EDITION

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